Ending Domestic Abuse - a Pack for Churches

The aim of this policy is to enable the Church to address domestic abuse both within its own community and wider society.  Also to work through how to deal with domestic abuse issues in today’s world.  It is intended to raise awareness and to highlight some of the areas that need to be considered in making our churches safe places.
 
It is intended to help:
1. Survivors of domestic abuse
2. People who are at risk of domestic abuse
3. Churches
4. Church Leaders
5. Pastoral Workers.

DOWNLOAD THE PACK - 2.7MB PDF
 
This is not an all inclusive resource.  The information contained within it will not equip individual Church leaders or Church members to be able to respond fully to the needs of those who are suffering or who have suffered from aspects of domestic abuse.  However, it aims to:
1. Educate members of church communities about the existence and effects of domestic abuse
2. Encourage churches to take necessary measures to be recognised as places where domestic abuse is taken seriously, victims are believed and respected and perpetrators are challenged.
3. Provide ideas for theological reflection on issues of domestic abuse  
4. Promote the importance of referring victims of domestic abuse to specialist secular organisations and encourage churches to support the work of these organisations
5. Raise awareness of the need for specialist help for perpetrators of domestic abuse.
 
The majority of domestic abuse is perpetrated by men against women.  However, domestic abuse can be inflicted by women on men and also in same sex relationships.  Female terms for victims and male terms for abusers in this resource are used as this is the most common presentation of domestic abuse, although the needs of male victims should be treated with equal concern.
 
EXPERTISE IN THE FIELD OF SUPPORTING VICTIMS OF DOMESTIC ABUSE CAN BE FOUND IN THE MANY WOMEN’S AND CHILDREN’S AID
AGENCIES.  OFTEN CHURCHES DO NOT HAVE THAT EXPERTISE.  WITHOUT PROPER TRAINING AND EXPERIENCE IN THIS FIELD WE CAN
DO MORE HARM THAN GOOD.  THEREFORE THIS PACK INVOLVES SUPPORTING VICTIMS AND EMPOWERING THEM TO SEEK PROFESSIONAL CARE FROM THOSE RELEVANT AGENCIES.

Natalie Collins, 12/04/2011